A Metatextual Blog About Blogging

Leave it to me to take a whole blog to say I don't have much to say.

At the risk of being a little meta here, it’s becoming more and more common for me to be at a total loss for what to blog about each week.  I mean, I tend to find a topic to write something interesting about (with the possible exception of this very blog), and I always have things to talk about week to week, in the breakdown of what I did and where things are at, and any notes about things I’m expecting in the following week or month.  I’ve long reserved the option in the back of my head that if blogging day came upon me and I didn’t have a topic for the main post, I would be comfortable not writing one, starting off with my weekly numbers, giving the rundown that I can always write, and calling that good for the week.  Up to this point I haven’t taken that option yet, even for the blog I wrote while out of town for a week with a limited schedule for myself.  I’ve got a pretty good streak going here, and it’s hard to admit that defeat, even when the subjects feel a little slim.

None of which is to say that I’m out of ideas for these blogs entirely, because there are a number of blog topics I’d like to cover.  They just, you know, don’t tend to work right now.  Like, next week’s blog topic is already set, because it’s been six months since the last time I counted up the word counts for the books I’ve read in Spanish so far and tallied it together.  The end of November will also be simple, because that will be my two-year Spanish anniversary.  And there will be a wealth of blogs to write once I start working with a tutor on speaking practice, but that requires, you know, starting working with a tutor.  Good topics, but not really relevant to this week.

This is all just a problem with the topic and format of the blog.  Putting in the work to learn a language is something ongoing on a constant, daily basis, but it isn’t novel on a constant, daily basis.  I read a chunk of a book and watch a chunk of television or youtube, rinse, repeat.  And while I could talk about those things and why I’m doing them, I’ve already talked about them, and I don’t want to just write repetitive blogs week in and week out.  I talked before about how there is only a finite amount of material to cover in terms of advice here, leading to a lot of the internet polyglot personalities just reiterating the same advice over and over again, and that isn’t something I really want to do.  When I have fresh takes on things that I’ve already written about, I’ll retouch on a topic, but that’s about all that I’m really interested in revisiting topics.  And the input based method is a topic I’ve covered to a significant degree at this point, so really, what is there to say about me reading a book and watching some stuff?

Now, at this point the general use of Spanish has invaded my life a bit more deeply than just those focused activities.  I’m hanging out more places online that are at least bilingual, which leads me to a more seamless, daily integration of Spanish in my life.  Like, a good chunk of my twitter feed is populated with Spanish language tweets, so my usage of twitter has just become bilingual.  Problem being, while that’s great for me, Stuff That Happens on Twitter is not exactly great blog material.

By the by, have I mentioned before that I have a twitter?  I’m an Internet Old PersonTM who doesn’t understand the twitters very well, but I’ve been making a concentrated effort to be better about using it daily.

Anyway, I don’t really have anywhere specific I’m going with this blog here, because as I said, no topic, but I am curious if those people out there who read these have any topics that they would like for me to cover in the future?  I’ve written the occasional blog in response to comments left, where a question had an opening for me to cover an idea in-depth, so having more ideas of directions to go would be great.  I’d like to keep things mostly language-related, but I’d be open to writing about other, tangential topics, too, if there was any interest.  I’d be open to talking about myself, or other things going on in the world.  I could also talk about some of the novels and shows and stuff that I’m consuming in a more critical way, discussing the content and execution, rather than just mentioning them purely in terms of my relation to them as Spanish works I am consuming and enjoying.  If anyone out that has any ideas or thinks something here I mentioned sounds like something they’d like to see me cover, let me know.  In the meantime, I’ll keep writing this blog, looking for topics where I can find them, and seeing just how long I can go before I do give in for a week and just post my numbers.  Hasn’t happened yet on this blog, it would be a shame to break the streak now.

Well then, let’s look at the numbers for the week.

Tuesday 10/22

  • Duolingo: 20 XP earned, ~0 minutes
  • Watching/Listening:1 episode of Kiwillius, 1 episode of Arte Divierte, ~50 minutes

Wednesday 10/23

  • Duolingo: 20 XP earned, ~0 minutes
  • Watching/Listening:1 episode of Kiwillius, ~100 minutes

Thursday 10/24

  • Duolingo: 20 XP earned, ~0 minutes
  • Reading: 5% of Snuff, ~60 minutes
  • Watching/Listening: 4 episodes of Kiwillius, ~90 minutes
  • Speaking: reading out loud, ~30 minutes

Friday 10/25

  • Duolingo: 20 XP earned, ~0 minutes
  • Reading: 5% of Snuff, ~60 minutes
  • Watching/Listening: 1 episode of La Zona Cero, 1 episode of Kiwillius, 2 episodes of Bojack Horseman, ~90 minutes
  • Speaking: reading out loud, ~30 minutes

Saturday 10/26

  • Duolingo: 20 XP earned, ~0 minutes
  • Reading: 7% of Snuff, ~90 minutes
  • Watching/Listening: 3 episodes of Kiwillius, 1 episode of Bojack Horseman, ~60 minutes
  • Speaking: reading out loud, ~30 minutes

Sunday 10/27

  • Duolingo: 20 XP earned, ~0 minutes
  • Reading: 5% of Snuff, ~60 minutes
  • Watching/Listening: 5 episodes of Kiwillius, 1 episode of Bojack Horseman, ~90 minutes
  • Speaking: reading out loud, ~30 minutes

Monday 10/28

  • Duolingo: 20 XP earned, ~0 minutes
  • Reading: 2% of Snuff, ~30 minutes
  • Watching/Listening: 1 episode of Kiwillius, ~60 minutes
  • Speaking: reading out loud, ~30 minutes
  • Total Duolingo: 140 XP, 0 minutes
  • Total reading: 1/3 books, 450 minutes
  • Total watching/listening: 18 YouTube episodes, 1 podcast, and 4 tv episodes, 540 minutes
  • Total speaking: reading out loud, 210 minutes
  • Total Time: 16 hours 30 minutes

A mostly normal week overall, though with a major dip on Monday.  I got food poisoning late Sunday, which knocked me down for most of Monday, which turned out to be an exceptionally terrible day even factoring out my insides trying to kill me.  Still, though, got some stuff done when I had the willpower to focus.

I’m nearing the end of Snuff, despite some ups and downs in my reading schedule, and it’s getting more difficult to accept that the series is nearly over.  I’m tempted to maybe throw a different book into my reading plans next, just to stretch the series out a little longer.  I got a book in the mail this week, so I have something on hand for that.  I don’t know, depends on how I feel.

I caught another fighting game tournament with Spanish commentary this week, which is cool.  I wish I could find more of those, or if they were better marked on youtube.  Also, this week, a new season of Bojack Horseman came out and I scrambled to add that to my daily watching schedule.  It’s a short, half-season, so I’ll be through with it shortly, but I can tell where my watching priorities are.

On Duolingo this week, I once again didn’t encounter much worth discussing.  I think I might be a smidge burned out on answering questions there at this point.  A lot of them are repetitive and the forum isn’t set up robustly enough to make it convenient to find, link, or copy a previously written explanation from a different thread, and it gets annoying answering the same general questions over and over again.  Which only covers the questions that are reasonable to answer, as the forums are littered with junk comments of users who don’t understand how the system works.  Or the questions asking something so intensely basic that it feels like it’s far too early for the person to be asking for clarification on the forums yet.  Like, I came across someone asking about when to use the vs. a, and definite/indefinite articles are just too basic of a concept to be poking around asking on the forum, you should be getting that from the lessons themselves.

Anyway, I’m mostly grumpy and down from other things this week, but I might end up dropping the usual Duolingo section from this recap if this trend continues.  No sense in planning that now when my mood’s taken some hits, though.

Well, that’ll do for this one.  TTFN.

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